Court throws out lustration law

Published on 8 June 2010 at 11:46

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Romania’s lustration - or vetting - law, which the nation had eagerly awaited for over 20 years, only survived for a few weeks. Passed on 19 May, the law temporarily barring ex-communist nomenklatura from holding certain public offices was ruled unconstitutional on 7 June – on the grounds that “the constitution prohibits collective punishment”, explains the Bucharest daily Gândul. The constitutional court was seized of the matter by 90 senators and MPs from the Social Democratic Party, including its honorary president and ex-president of Romania Ion Iliescu, the prime target of the legislation. Iliescu called the law “bullshit, an anachronistic Stalinist law that perfectly illustrates the old [Romanian] saying: the country is burning and granny’s doing her hair”. Meanwhile, Romania has been grappling for several weeks now with strikes against hefty budget cuts decided by the government.

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